EPS – AZ by accinent


									EPS – AZ                                                                    Electronic Power source - az
www.EPS-AZ.com                                                                     1507 W Loughlin Drive
                                                                                 Chandler, AZ 85224 1847
                                                                                     VM 480 821.1946
                                                                                    FAX 413 208.6859

                                             INTERVIEW HELP SHEET

Helpful Interviewing Tips

The following are some interviewing tips we strongly suggest you read, review and use prior to interviewing with company
hiring officials. These tips may be beneficial in both phone and in-plant interviewing! We have found that people who practice
basic interviewing questions have a higher rate of success in receiving job offers. Prior preparation will enable you to be
confident, overcome interviewing inexperience, and sell yourself and your qualifications.


Being properly prepared before an interview, rather than approaching it without any anticipated responses, will be
a good investment of your time and effort. Here are a few helpful hints to increase your chances of a company
making you a job offer:

 1. Learn something about the company before you interview. (Telephone or on-site).

  2. Make a good first impression - present yourself with confidence and assurance . . giving precise answers to
their questions. Answer with thought, directness and enthusiasm – but remember KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid).

 3. Look company officials straight in the eye when talking to them.

 4. Dress properly. Where applicable a conservative suit, white shirt, contrasting tie and shined shoes are in
order. Women should wear minimal make-up, pumps and neutral colored hose.

  5. Review how you'll present yourself and emphasize those aspects of your background that will be of value to
the company.

 6. Review how you will package and present the negative aspects of your background in a positive way.

 7. Never complain about your present or previous employer.

 8. Possible reasons for leaving a past/present employer:

                 ". . . for more opportunity and advancement."
                 ". . . for greater earning potential."
                 ". . . for an opportunity to advance into management."
                 ". . . for increased technical challenge."
                 ". . . for employment stability."
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  9. Try to find out what the next step is, and when you can expect to hear from the company.

10. If you like the job opportunity, be sure and ask for it. Possible ways of expressing interest may be:

               "I'm very interested in the job . . when can I expect to hear from you?"
               "This opportunity is what I've been looking for . . when can I start?"

11. Keep your earning requirements reasonable. Remember that this potential employer should not be held
responsible for your present employers low pay scale, or low salary increases.

12. Drop a short note to the company thanking them for the interview - perhaps to the Hiring Official with "cc" to
HR and/or others that were involved in the interview process. Personal individual notes would sometimes be in
order . . but NOT always necessary. An e-mail “thank you” is certainly acceptable.

SELF-CONFIDENCE . . . If you appear sure of yourself and can project your assurance to others, you will
impress the interviewer.

MATURITY . . . Emotionally mature applicants are not hostile, defensive or suspicious. They show no self-pity
and are willing to discuss their weaknesses as well as their strengths.

SENSE OF HUMOR . . . the more likable applicant can look at the lighter side of things, yet tell no off-color stories
nor laugh raucously during the interview - "moderation in all things".

FLUENCY OF EXPRESSION . . . Clear, concise and reasonably rapid responses to questions are helpful. You
can't successfully sell yourself with mumbles, monotones, "ers" and "uhs".

WARMTH . . . An intangible but very important personal trait. The "cold fish" generally shares the same fate as
the "deadpan".


Most interviews take the form of questions and answers, although some Interviewers prefer to let you just talk for
yourself. In either case, you will be expected to provide the same information. Some examples of questions you
can expect, and must prepare for are:

       What were your grades in high school/college?
       What were your best subjects in school?
       What was your GPA (Major/overall)?
       Tell me about your extracurricular activities?
       What positions of leadership did you hold? (Civic/Church/School)
       How did you finance you education?
       Tell me about your summer jobs?
       What assignments did you have in the service?
       What rank did you attain?
       What was your Senior Project?
       What courses "excited" you?
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         What courses did you find interesting?
         What sort of work do you see yourself doing in 3 to 5 to 10 years?
         What was the nature of your job / duties / responsibilities?
         Tell me about a typical day on your job?
         To whom do you report (title)?
         How is your supervisor to work for?
         * What are his strengths? Weaknesses?
         What special skills did you acquire?
         What special accomplishments did you achieve?
         How have you saved money/time for past employers?
         What do you especially like about your job? Dislike?
         Why do you want to leave (or did you leave) this job?

All applicants are likely to be asked some personal questions on their finances, hobbies, personal and family
plans, and special problems/needs you or you family may have. Always strive to project eagerness and interest,
be a conversationalist by being yourself.

SELLING SUGGESTIONS: Answer factual questions as specifically as possible - emphasize accomplishments.
For example:

- Tell me about your experience in the Credit Department?

                   Poor response - "I checked credit references and wrote up credit reports."
                   Better response - "I investigated the credit standing of customers by studying credit agency
                    reports, and checking banks and other vendors. During the first year that I had this job the bad
                    debt ratio on new customers dropped by 40%."

          * Role-playing with spouse, friends or family members can be very helpful.

Most Job Hunters make two devastating mistakes when they are being questioned in an interview:

    1. They fail to LISTEN TO THE QUESTION. They then proceed to annoy the Interviewer either by answering
a question that wasn't asked, or by giving out a lot of superfluous information. Leave that to the politicians - be
direct and precise . . and listen, carefully!

   2. More importantly, they attempt to answer questions with virtually NO PREPARATION. Even the glibbest
person on earth, even the most skilled debater can not answer questions off the cuff without damaging his/her
chances of success.

The Question Answering Rule says -

        "Answer every question in terms of your background or qualifications, or in terms of the job to be filled."

Be specific and emphatic. Prepare for tough questions. Anticipate what they will be. They will focus on reasons
for leaving, quality of performance and overall job function and personality. Be brief but factual. Write out your
answers . . . refine them and commit them to memory.
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21 QUESTIONS . . . and answers to help master even the most grueling employment interview

What follows are a number of questions that various surveys have indicated are most often asked, no matter the
job classification. Study them carefully, develop strong responses, and feel comfortable with them. Maintain
modesty while, at the same time, being sure to bring your strong points out. Remember - if you're honest, you will
only have to live up to the truth! If you present yourself in a self-confident but honest light, your candidacy will
receive prime consideration.

Because you have done your homework on the company, you KNOW exactly why you want to work here. All you
must do is organize your own personal reasons into several short, hard-hitting sentences:

    -   "You make the best product on the market today."
    -   "Your management is farsighted enough to reinvest the company's profits so that soon you will be the
        leader in our industry."
    -   "You are on the leading edge of technology and that's where I want to be."

The Interviewer does not want a lengthy regurgitation of your resume. He or she is not yet asking for a barrage of
data. The Interviewer is interested in testing your poise and confidence. Give them a SHORT, GENERALIZED
SUMMARY. Pre-plan a five to ten minute answer describing your education and then each job in terms of
accomplishments or performance indicators. Be on target by mentioning the responsibilities that have direct
emphasis on the position opening(s) for which you are interviewing. Close with something like:

    -   "I have the qualifications to do the job that has to be done, and my track record proves it."
    -   "I know that this is the job for me and that I will be successful.”
    -   "I am sure you want to hire the best person for the position, and I believe that I am that person."

Give a truthful one or two word answer like:

    -   "The future"
    -   "The challenge"
    -   "The competitiveness"

This type of response will force the Interviewer to ask you to explain, giving you yet another opportunity to
demonstrate your profound knowledge of the company, its products, technology, etc.

By all means, "YES!". Ambitious, hungry people are always preferred over those willing to settle for a safe
routine. If you sense such a direct answer threatens your interviewer's security, you might add "when I'm judged
qualified" or "should an opening develop in several years".
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Obviously, this is being asked because they may intend to ship you off - either now or later. If you answer "no",
you will, most probably, not be hired. If you answer "yes", understand that, once you are a trusted and valued
employee, you may be able to exert the necessary leverage to avoid a possible “less desirable” out-of-town

Be human and admit that not everything comes easily. Nevertheless, be careful what you do admit. "I find it
difficult to decide which of two good workers must be let go." "It is difficult for me to tell a client that he/she is
running his/her business badly."

Never apologize for yourself. "I think I've done well, but I need new challenges and opportunities." This is a good
time to drop hero stories. "No one else in my company has advanced as fast as I have" or "I think you'd agree
that I've accomplished quite a bit in the last five years".

A reasonable response might be "as long as I continue to learn and grow in my field".

This is best answered with a degree of self-effacement:

    -   "I would be lying to you if I told you I was perfect, but I have tackled every assignment with all my energy
        and talents"
    -   "I'm sure there were times when I could have worked harder or longer, but, over the years, I've tried to do
        my best, and I believe I have succeeded".

They are not looking for your personal short-term goals! You must know exactly what can and cannot be
achieved by the ideal candidate in your shoes. Too many Job Hunters butcher this question because they have
not done their homework and have no idea where their career potential with this company can lead them. If you
see yourself at another company, or in another department of the company with whom you are interviewing, tread
lightly. You can't afford to tell your Interviewer that you believe you'll be more successful than he/she will be.

Deliver a short, fact filled summary of the most important (2 or 3) qualifications you have that directly apply to the
position for which you are applying. "I have a background in accounting, I've demonstrated proven sales skills and
I'm capable of handling several projects simultaneously". You may also draw on your "pre-planned" presentation
(See Question #2). If possible, draw “your qualifications” from the company’s own job description.
                                                                                                             Page 6

This could be one of the Interviewers first questions. Be sure you are ready to answer it satisfactorily. If you are
currently in a dead-end job, locked out of advancement potential, explain this. The interviewer will understand. If
your job has become routine, void of learning experience, they will also accept that. If you feel your present
employer is losing ground to competition, through no fault of your own, he or she will accept that too. However, if
you say that your salary is to low it becomes suspicious. If you say you hate your boss, the interviewer will
wonder if you'd soon be hating him or her. If you say you are bored, he or she will suspect that you are just
another job-hopper. Use the "benefits" they are offering as the "reasons" you want to leave - after all you are
looking for something you don't have now . . . and they are offering it to you! Explain to them why you want to join
their firm . . not why you want to leave your current employer.

This is a tough one. It is kind of like `changing horses in the middle of the stream'. Before you interview, spend
one hour and organize these reasons into a written statement. Memorize this explanation and be prepared to
deliver it because you will definitely be asked. Your explanation should include:

          a) How your previous work experience will contribute to your new career path.
          b) What excites you most about this new field.
          c) How you came to make this career change decision.

If there is a gap in your resume, you must be prepared to explain what you were doing in that period. Until you
have satisfied the interviewers curiosity you will not even be considered for their employment opportunity. If you
were fired, and have spent the last year looking for a job without success, you will understand an employer's
reluctance to hire you. If, on the other hand, you explain what you have learned or accomplished during this
hiatus, he or she will warm to your candidacy. For example:

      -    "I have taken several courses to strengthen my skills in . . ."
      -    "I used this period to reexamine my goals and have reached this conclusion . . .".

                          . . . . . the Interviewer must be given a positive explanation.

This question is crucial. In fact, an unsatisfactory answer to this one is among the top reasons for Candidates
failing to get jobs they want. You must convince your Interviewer that your "job-hopping days" are over. If you
feel you made a mistake leaving previous jobs tell him or her so. At the same time, remind the Interviewer that
your job performance was never in question. They will appreciate your candor. If something in your personal or
business life has recently changed and would affect your stability in the future, come right out with the facts.
They'll be anxious to hear. Never be afraid to tell them that you left because company was failing, or closed
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You are being asked this question for two important reasons. First, to determine whether you are capable of
performing these duties and, second, to determine if the previous experience you have described was at a high
enough level to include hiring/firing responsibilities. If you have had no experience in hiring/firing, you must make
a considerable effort to convince the Interviewer that you are capable of performing in this area. You may also
ask "Does this opportunity hold the responsibility for hiring and firing?" before you answer.

Have your hero stories ready, and be willing to prove that you have made significant contributions in one or more
of these basic areas. Again, keep you explanation short, and try to include specific dollar amounts. Factual
answers for factual questions!

This question, if asked unexpectedly, can frighten the wits out of you. Remember that all things are relative and,
if you feel the question is not really applicable, you may simply respond by saying, "In my area of the country, and
with my experience, my salary is considered quite favorable". Alternatively, if the question has merit, you may
respond with something like:

    -   "I would be lying to you if I told you I was perfect, but I have tackled every assignment with all my energy
        and talents"
    -   "I have been willing to sacrifice short-term earnings because I felt that I was gaining valuable experience."
    -   "I have been reluctant to gain a reputation as a job-hopper, preferring, instead, to build my career on
        solid, long-term achievement."

Similar to the "hired and fired" question, the interviewer is trying to determine the depth of your experience. Be
careful not to exaggerate.

It is best to keep this answer very general and short, thus permitting the Interviewer to probe more deeply if
he/she wishes. Offer a short list of positive character traits that describe you.

    -   "I like to work hard."
    -   "I get along with all kinds of people and I know how to listen.”
    -   "I pay close attention to details, I know how to watch costs and I can keep difficult customers smiling.”

See questions 2 and 11. Summarize four or five key areas of experience that you can bring to your new job.
Specifically demonstrate to the Interviewer how each one helps solve his/her problems. For example, "My
experience in new-product introductions will be very helpful to your entire marketing effort" or "My industrial
design background will strengthen your sales-force capability in dealing with large clients". Again - be specific
and emphatic.
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   NOTE: You must make each response your own. Using "our words", if you do not normally communicate in this
   manner, will seem strange to the hiring official, and it will be uncomfortable for you. It will cause a concern as to
   "what is real" and "what is canned"? The most important preparation is your own self-confidence. You must feel
   comfortable with everything you say and do . . . that you are being yourself and representing your capabilities,
   personality and individuality in an honest light.

   ASKING QUESTION . . . employers like to be interviewed too!

   Have a list . . . something you prepared in advance of the interview . . . things you need to know in order to make
   an informed decision about this opportunity. Jot them down, a yellow legal pad, or even your personal day
   planner would be appropriate. As the interview progresses don't be afraid to jot down additional notes . . . either
   as answers to questions you have already postulated or notes that will help you to remember something you feel
   you need clarification on later. It's always better to "save it for the end" of the interview rather than interrupting.
   Of course, at any time during the interview, should the Interviewer ask if you have any questions, it would be
   appropriate to ask.

      Make them job related but don't "cross-examine"
      Ask questions that require an explanation
      You may ask questions relating to:
          a) The job opportunity
          b) The company (it's people / products / locations)
          c) Importance of the job for which you are interviewing
          d) The particular responsibilities/functions/authority of the position
      Ask about the person who previously held this position
          a) How did they perform their duties
          b) Where are they today
          c) Ask questions to try and determine the "type" of person they are looking for
          d) How did they perform their duties


      Salary
      Fringe benefits
      Relocation assistance
      Vacations
      Retirement

   . . . once you determine you would be interested in the position, and it is offered to you, there will be plenty of time
   for clarification in these areas.


   When you receive an offer from a company, you sometime tend to get emotional. And why not! Life is emotional.
   However, emotion short circuits judgment, logic and decision-making processes . . . and those are the skills we
   now must rely on. You may have a hard time determining what you should or should not do in accepting an offer.
   The following are some points you will find beneficial in your decision making process. We do not like to influence
   your choice - but, rather, are available to you as a sounding board, a specialist.
                                                                                                              Page 9

We can help best by answering questions, supplying you with information and helping to give you a better over-all
picture of the marketplace. It is time, once again, to take off your "Engineers hat" and put on your "Businessman's
hat". Now you have to account to the main person - yourself!

1. Once you have an offer from a potential new employer, answer either positive (+) or negative (-) or yes/no to
the following questions. To validate your choice you need to answer the questions for both your present employer
as well as for the company that has made you an offer. Once completed, add the total plus's and minus's
(yes's/no's) to tell you which direction you should be leaning.

    -   Do you like the nature of your work?
    -   Can you do the job?
    -   Does the job offer technical challenges?
    -   Is the company and position stable?
    -   Is the working relationship between you and your boss good?
    -   Is the company paying/offering you a fair wage?
    -   Does the position offer you a challenge for future growth, salary increases, etc.?
    -   Is the location appropriate?
    -   Is the philosophy of the company agreeable with yours?

       It is important to remember we are evaluating/comparing your present to your possible future job. We are
not trying to decide if we should accept the offer . . . not yet!

2. Use a “Ben Franklin list”. Draw a line down the middle of a legal pad. Then list, and number, all of the plus's
and minus's concerning the job. Positives go on one side and negatives on the other . . . it could be looked at as
a scale . . . the side with the highest number of items will indicate, logically and unemotionally, the decision that
should be made. It is important to note here that this method gives no special treatment to any plus or negative . .
. they are all considered equal in value.

3. A Salary Curve Graph could help you to determine if it is the right time to move "on to greener pastures" or not.

S       80

A         -

L       70

A        -

R       60

Y        -


Yrs of Exp     0 . . . . . . .1 . . . . . . . 5 . . . . . . .10 . . . . . . .15 . . . . . . .20
                                                                                                                   Page 10

Let's say you've been working with the same company for the last five (Plot the annual salary in thousands of
dollars above the 1 and the 5) years and you are not receiving what you feel you are worth. You don't see a real
"promotion" in the near future or you're not being challenged. Now is the time for a job change. If you were to
receive an increase of 10% at a new job, you can gauge, using the same growth rate as your present job, (a line
parallel to the one drawn between your salary above the 1 and salary above the 5). Draw a line between a point
10% higher than your present salary (above 5) and where you will be in 10 years. Your higher salary curve would
be with your new position, rather than an almost "flat" rate from years 5 to 10. You must also realize that your %
potential increase with your new employer will be higher during your first 3-5 years of employment with them . . .
putting you, hopefully, at an even higher salary level. (Salary Compression: The point at which you begin to
receive salary reviews that are not keeping up with inflation and/or “demand” for talent.) Point of fact – A typical
new college hire will be making less after three (3) years of working for the same employer as his newly hired
newly graduated counterpart.

4. If you have a problem with your decision, concerning the acceptance/rejection of the offer, approach a
“disinterested third party". We would like to think that we can fill this function and, to the best of our ability, we will.
However, we have a professional stake in your selection. . not to mention a financial investment. We will always
do our best to be non-biased. However, you may wish to approach a close friend, fellow worker, or a relative
(mother / father / brother / sister) or even a total stranger with "What would you do if. . . . ?" Be sure to give them
all the pro's and con's as you see them so far as your career is concerned. We want you to be happy about your
decision . . . we never want you to say "I wonder what would have happened if . . ? ". NEVER put yourself in that

5. What if I've decided I want to accept the new opportunity, but I'm afraid of how my boss will react when I turn in
my two-week notice? That’s understandable . . we are all creatures of habit and, even when we know that what
we are about to do is right, we may still have a tendency to be nervous . . get cold feet . . experience pangs of
guilt. A letter of resignation, wherein you thank those concerned for all you have learned and how you have
progressed, accompanied with a short paragraph about a "new career opportunity that will be of enormous
benefit" to you and your family, perhaps making reference to "technical challenges" and "growth opportunity", will
solve all of your concerns. Your present employer, if they are truly interested in you as an individual, will realize
that you have outgrown their ability to help you progress, and that you harbor no ill feelings. They will wish you
their best. Once you tender your resignation the first time . . . tell your boss you are leaving . . get it over with,
you won't feel any agonizing decision pains like this again. Remember . . . we have to look out for your best
interests . . no one else will!

COUNTER OFFERS . . . what they are and what you need to know about them

After you have accepted an offer from a new employer and, on giving your notice to your present company, a
counter offer is made, you should consider the following:

   1. Ask yourself if you were worth "X" dollars yesterday, why are they suddenly willing to pay you "X+" dollars
today when you were not anticipating a raise for some time?

    2. Consider the fact that your present employer may be merely "buying time" until he can locate a
replacement. Even an annual raise of $3,000 would only cost them $500 if it takes them as long as 60 days to
find your replacement.

   3. Is just more money going to change everything in your present job? We know money is a motivation, we
have discussed that, but it's not the motivation! Consider the new opportunity you will be giving up. What made it
look so favorable when you accepted?
                                                                                                           Page 11

   4. The company will probably feel as though they have been “BLACKMAILED", or had "a gun held to their
head" when they gave you a raise after you announced your decision to leave.

5. Realize you are now a marked man. The possibility of promotion is extremely limited for someone who has
"given notice". The company is vulnerable and they now know it! They will not risk giving more responsibility to
someone who was previously committed to move on.

6. When economic slow-downs occur, you are one of the first to go. You indicated your intention to do so once
before. It is only natural that your position will be eliminated in a slack period.

7. You should know that statistics complied by the National Employment Association confirm the fact that "over
85% of those people who elect to accept a counter offer are no longer with their company six month later”. Our
personal experience has been a more conservative 75% . . . but even that is 3 out of 4.

8. Carefully review all the reasons you wanted to make a change in the first place. Does the counter offer really
offset these reasons?

9. If you do intend to seriously consider a counter offer be sure you ask your present employer to confirm all
details of said offer in writing. We would expect no less from them than we should from any other potential "new”

10. Call our office and discuss the ramifications of re-making your decision, and how it will impact on future job
opportunities. We would also like to discuss the specifics of the "counter-offer". Remember that we are on your
side and want only what is best for your long-term career development. If possible "renegotiations" of your new
opportunity are in order, we will assist you in preparation for them.

Remember - we change jobs vicariously more times in a year than you will in your entire career!

. . . . . good luck!

         Garry Moore
         VM 480 821-1946

                   . . . . be honest in your dealings with your fellow man . . . .

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